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back to article Jacqui promotes police handhelds

Home secretary Jacqui Smith has told Parliament that she wants police forces to introduce handheld devices quickly and to increase collaboration on IT. In a debate on the Queen's Speech on 4 December 2008, Smith said that police forces have already introduced 10,000 handheld devices and will bring in a further 20,000 over the …

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I can see it now ...

Two policemen hassling a third because his hand held device contains a camera.

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Stalin Smith promotes hand-helds??

Aren't the police militia in already the palm of her hand?

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yet another...

little bit of the uberdatabase jigsaw.

"Papers,Citizen!"

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Flame

Did I miss it?

I've re-read the article and I can't find the part that says what the purpose of this "handheld" device is. So I'm assusming it will be some kind of nightstick with built in

Taser to make you more "co-operative"

Camera to take your mugshot while not being capable of videoing plod obtaining your "co-operation"

DNA sampler

Fingerprint scanner

3G transmitter to send all the info back ( to the uberdatabase and receive a list of suggested "crimes" you can be charged with

<-- Flames, coz that's what happens to any inconvenient evidence

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Anonymous Coward

Can't wait...

to read the first article when one of these things goes missing.

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Unhappy

What a waste of money!

I was going to write something here, but I can't be bothered now. I can't wait until this half wit is sacked.

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great...

more chances for people to lose our data... i wonder how many 'handheld' will get lost.

surely a handheld can just be the bloody walkie talkie they have?

and do we seriously expcect the police can be trusted with these devices?? they are already breaking their own laws

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Er

How is this more cost efficient than just a few more radio operators back at base? Maybe for rural bobbies (although, they don't need PDAs as they are, you know, extinct). But for the rest, they have radios in car and about their person. And phones. Less sepdning of the money and while you;re at it, less making up stupid crap because you feel you need to do high-profile things.

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Jacqui promotes police handhelds

They already have them handheld thingies, truncheons, tasers, pepper sprays etc. Why do they need more?

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Stop

Re: Did I miss it?

>> 3G transmitter to send all the info back ( to the uberdatabase and receive a list of suggested "crimes" you can be charged with

Funny you should mention that - A colleague was pulled over recently by a police car; The officer told him his car wasn't insured according to the DVLA check on his number plate.

(In fact, he was insured, but he'd put a vanity plate on the car so the DVLA copy of his insurance details didn't match up with the DVLA record of the vanity plate registration). *

The policeman was quite chatty and mentioned the new toy he had - A Blackberry, that enabled him to text registration numbers through to the DVLA for checking.

And of course the officer was using a hand-held device while driving...

* Disregarding the argument that it's the driver who is insured to drive, not the vehicle to be driven

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Coat

but...

will they run crysis at full settings?

mines the one with "save the economy - slash Jacqui's budget" stencilled on the back!

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Fat Lot Of Use!

I used to work for an organisation that produces secure handsets for the police. We spent years working on developing new data handheld devices which were supposed to really help the police to get out of the paperwork treadmill and on to the streets where they could tackle real crime.

That was the theory until I saw something in the City of London which made me realise that I was wasting my time. As a direct consequence I left the company.

I was standing at a bus stop when I saw two police cars perform a rolling block on a bus, bringing it to a stop. There were four police officers in each car. Minutes later they dragged a man off the bus. It was January and he was wearing shorts flip flops and looked rather drunk (despite the description he did not look Australian).

After the chap was cuffed, the bus pulled away, and the eight cops stood around chatting for about 5 minutes until a police van with 6 officers in pulled up. All 6 got out saunteded over to have a bit of a laugh and joke with the other eight for about another 5 minutes.

A short while later, another two officers in a paddy wagon pulled up and also proceded to stand around an chat. Al the while the cuffed man was left standing on the street.

My bus arrived and when I left, 16 police officers were still standing around talking and joking. SIXTEEN officers to arrest one drunk guy!

This made me realise that putting mobile devices in the hands of these people would do fuck all. They would still be standing around doing nothing all day, only now they would have £500 worth of additional kit on them.

Since then the laws have become more draconian, so I'm sure that those officers are today arresting people for suspicion of 'extreme porn', taking photos, leaving their bin lids open, dropping twiglets, being a member of the opposition and generally 'looking a bit wrong'

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RW
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That's it!

Unarguable, definitive proof that Jacqui Smith is stupid. "Stupid as all get-out", as my sainted mother would have said. "Stupid as a bump on a log" according to some others. "Stupider than the common garden slug", from the horticultural crowd.

How else can her fixation on IT solutions to all problems, even non-existent ones, be explained?

I'd say something nasty about her background being "school teacher", but that would unduly cast the teaching profession into disrepute.

Incredible. Government by fad, government by tabloid hysteria, government by outright lies, government by methods suitable only for the classroom.

I'm going to try to restrain myself from any further comments on Ms. Smith's obviously being unfit for Home Secretary.

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Go

From one AC to another AC

Now that is worth reporting to police authorities. In a way, not reporting it formally implies that such behavior and actions are supported.

(It runs along lines of "you saw it, what did you do about it? Nothing? Oh well they might have been your friends or something?"

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Anonymous Coward

A nice earner?

Handhelds with access to police records will doubtless offer Plod a nice opportunity to supplement the retirement fund. 'Forget' to hand one in when you go off duty, pop in for a few at the shadiest local you can find and rent out access by the hour by auction.

@AC/"Fat Lot Of Use!"

I live next to a main road in London and I see what you describe about once a week. It's not uncommon to see 15 coppers standing around picking their arses for half an hour or more while one or two give some poor Asian/Black guy the extended once-over for having the temerity to drive a BMW/Merc.

9 coppers to pull Damian Green, 250 to arrest two guys in Forest Gate; we're going to start needing a word for large groups of them soon.

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@Red Bren

"3G transmitter to send all the info back ( to the uberdatabase and receive a list of suggested "crimes" you can be charged with"

In theory, that might actually not be such a bad idea, since half the coppers knocking about seem to have no fucking idea of what the law actually is.

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Alert

Are these the same..

Are the the same hand-helds that show up as WPA-TKIP or WEP with a number followed by the words Patrol, every time a copper walks down the street.

This government is the blind leading the blind when it comes to technology. What with the information commissioner giving away peoples details in clear breach of the data protection act you now have bobbies on the beat being tracked by WiFi... Now if I can just get one to stand in one spot long enough, "Victor Charlie Five Nine Seven, they need you back at base...", "No, wait one, Victor Charlie Five Nine Seven, we've decided you'd be better off playing in the traffic!"

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Pirate

wimax?

if the gov't are going to go ahead with yet another insane way of wasting money, I would like to see them pay for a national wimax network, over which they could VPN their traffic and then let we plebs also use it.

they could use a locked-down version of the nokia tablet for this purpose.

however, what will probably happens is that some large manglement conslutancy (you know who they are) will receive billions to implement a half-arsed system with custom hardware that never quite works with communications that fails and a total lack of security built with Microsoft products which cost a fortune for license/support/maintenance!

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Anonymous Coward

Backwards

Having recently had involvement with the Police and their taking a witness statement from me, it's certainly about time they were bought forward with the times and made use of technology: they're still in the stone ages; they took a statement from me, hand wrote it all up in front of me, it took one hour, I could have typed it up and emailed it to them in about 10 minutes.

The question is, will these new handhelds be used to take witnesss statements?

I doubt it, why do I say that? You'd need a proper keyboard to type a full blown witness statement and a handheld wouldn't be up to the job. Secondly, it's clear that a key element of the witness statement process is ensuring that no changes have been made to the statement subsequent to its writing, and that proof that the statement has been made by the witness is made ( by signature).

So it's evident, that any electronic statement made will have to have mechanisms to ensure the integrity can not be compromised. A whole mechanims of protection and security needs to be developed and I very much doubt the Police are this far advanced, at the moment.

It's incredible to see how backwards the Police are.

Before Smith starts to blow money on technology, she needs to understand what the technology can actually do, otherwise we'll just see more and more money blown on IT technology which adds little value.

If the hand held computers are to be used for simply checking person and car registration checks on the Police National Computer then I think they'd be a waste of money and time: the Police can already undertake those checks by radio back to their operations centre.

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Coat

New and ever more efficient ways to lose data

So, will these handheld terminals have full access to the PNC? Local storage for when they're jammed? Password protection ("Pl0d")? Encrypted comms? Will they be counted out, and counted back every shift? Will there be audit logs of searches? Will access be rate-limited?

And, when one - or more - is inevitably compromised: a) how long will it take to know? b) how will access be revoked? and c) what safeguards are in place to undo the damage caused by granting database access to organised criminals?

(Icon of a light-fingered chav making off with a police handheld)

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Black Helicopters

When do the Met officially change their name to

The Combine?

Gordon Freeman would know what to do!

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Paris Hilton

Forest Gate?

'9 coppers to pull Damian Green, 250 to arrest two guys in Forest Gate; we're going to start needing a word for large groups of them soon.'

It just has to be a thicket of coppers.

Paris, I spy a fat consultancy fee for her to teach them all about mobile data protection.

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Stop

Excellent News

You do realise that this may make it possible to hack into the police central computer and add information about Whacky Jacqui's crimes (real or otherwise!)

We could maybe add information that says she owns a copy of the Scorpions album "Virgin Killer" with it's original cover.

Justice will prevail!

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Coat

saving time...

Can I just say that as a victim of police harassment, I really like the Blackberries. Now when I get stopped for disqual driving I can be on my way in minutes, instead of being dragged down the station whilst they "check out my story"

At least until they manage to get their intelligence databases mobile and I have to respond to the next 'incorrect' thing.

Mines the one being searched again and again and again ( probably for batteries for their mobile tech)

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